Report Shows Abortions Down Among 18-, 19-Year-Olds

By Dennis Lambert
Published: Friday, September 12, 2014 - 9:26am

A new report shows the number of abortions among Arizona residents was up slightly, last year, with one notable exception. The increase was negligible, just 1 percent, and there was also a hike in the rate of abortions, the number of procedures versus the number of women of child-bearing age. But among 18- and 19-year-olds, the number of abortions dropped by a third.

Health Director Will Humble says teen pregnancies are also down, possibly because the morning-after pill is available without a prescription. Cathi Herrod of the anti-abortion Center for Arizona Policy says that may be right but it doesn’t make Plan B a good solution for teens.

“The best choice for a teen girl is to have the baby and place the baby for adoption or parent the child. Neither abortion nor Plan B are ever the right answer to an unexpected pregnancy,” Herrod said.

The report shows an increase in the number of older women terminating pregnancies with an abortion. Humble said the reasons for that are unclear but there’s some evidence economic circumstances play a role.

“If the economy is bad and they're unemployed and they have challenges economically, some people are more likely to choose to have an abortion,” Humble said.

The report says 13,254 women had abortions in Arizona in 2013.

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